Debra Ayala Tapia, the married 38-year-old mother of three children up on charges of having unlawful sex with a 15-year-old family friend who got her pregnant, has pleaded guilty to the charges against her and was sentenced to a year in jail.
The Santa Ana woman pleaded guilty to felony lewd acts with a child 14 or 15, oral
copulation with someone younger than 16 and unlawful sexual intercourse.
In addition to 365 days behind bars, Orange County Superior Court Judge Erick Larsh sentenced Ayala to three years of probation and ordered her to register as a sex offender. Conviction without the plea deal could have fetched her a maximum of sentence of seven years and eight months in state prison.
The boy's mother said she
thought of Ayala like a sister. Ayala started inviting the kid over
at night in early 2009 and went on to have sex with him twice weekly between February and November 2009.
Ayala gave birth to the boy's daughter on Nov. 21, 2009.
The 15-year-old's mother became suspicious of the relationship between her son
and Ayala, a suspicion that was reinforced when suggestive notes between the two were found by the boy's mom. She confronted her son, who admitted to the illegal sexual relationship. The mother then demanded a paternity test that confirmed her son was the father of Ayala's fourth child.
The boy's mom reported the unlawful sexual relationship to the Santa Ana Police Department, which arrested Ayala in March after an investigation.
The boy's family has custody of the child. Ayala is fighting for visitation.